Biden to call for so-called ‘windfall’ tax on oil and gas companies as he escalates rhetoric amid record profits from the energy sector.
— Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday suggested a tax on oil and gas companies as he escalated rhetoric ahead of the Democratic presidential debate Wednesday and Thursday.
The tax proposal, which has become a central part of his campaign for president, would also be part of his climate change plan.
In an exchange with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Biden cited the oil and gas industry as a symbol of all the prosperity that the industry has contributed to the country.
“We’re the only country in the world right now that’s the biggest, richest country in the world with the highest energy prices in the world,” he said. “Now you can look at that and say, well, there’s no way we’re going to do anything about it, and you would be right. Maybe not. But we are going to have a lot of ideas, because we have an idea that’s more important than any one of these things.”
“That is an idea that we really need to get out ahead of. This is an idea that will make us more energy secure. It will make us less dependent on imported oil. It will help us with our climate change. These are all issues that we are going to be bringing out in the debate tomorrow night.”
He added, “But it will also put more money back into the pocket of our working families, making it easier for them to afford quality health care and higher education for their kids.”
Biden’s comments come from the same “we have an idea” theme that he has used previously after a number of major business sectors have suffered from what he called “big, bad” job losses and his economic advisers have said “further deterioration” of the overall economy.
Biden is trying to paint a more hopeful future than most Republican candidates, who have used the “big, bad” language to describe the struggling economy.
In his Monday night statement, Biden said he was “more